The amazing and breath-taking vacation destination of Croatia is quickly becoming a badly kept secret. Word is spreading like wildfire of just how awesome Croatia is, and we can promise that once you visit Croatia, you’ll be wanting to return every year. There are countless reasons why a trip to Croatia should be at the top of your bucket list, and why it should be your next travel destination. So what is it that makes a visit to Croatia such an unforgettable experience? Imagine pristine waterfalls, crystal-clear turquoise blue waters, unbelievable music festivals, beautiful architecture, delicious cuisine and incredible resorts. Don’t forget about the gorgeous, secluded beaches and caves you’ll find when you explore Croatia’s many mesmerizing islands. That’s not even the half of it, though. Here are 11 amazing secrets Croatia holds that make it the ultimate vacation destination:
11 World-Class Music Festivals
Croatia is a fabulous music mecca, and it’s quickly becoming known as the new, better and unspoiled Ibiza. Croatia is showing off world-class, exclusive music festivals with top artists and ideal locations under the sun in paradise. Many travelers wish to plan their trip to Croatia around the festivals, and they won’t have a problem doing so in style. Croatia Wave offers festival packages, including accommodation near the festival and transfers to and from the airport. Not only that, but Croatia Wave can also arrange for a seamless VIP festival experience for those who want an unforgettable music experience while in Croatia. They’ll even help you plan other activities near the festival while you’re visiting, such as swimming in pristine lakes, or mapping out secret beaches for you to discover.
10 Natural Wonders
Croatia has some of the most incredible natural wonders you’ll ever witness. Krka National Park has a stunning bright green lake (which you can swim in) fed by a massive, jaw-dropping waterfall you can’t help but gawk at; Plitvice Lakes National Park boasts an amazing collection of waterfalls and gorgeous green-blue lakes; Paklenica National Park offers rock climbing, cliff-jumping and beautiful natural pools. The best way to see all of these unbelievable national parks is on the Oh! So Croatia tour. It’s a brilliant bus tour designed for millennial travelers looking for unforgettable adventures, and they take you to see the aforementioned amazing natural wonders.
9 Dubrovnik’s Old City Architecture
‘The Wall’ in Dubrovnik is a must-see. While you walk old town Dubrovnik’s medieval wall, you will see walls and architecture built in the 15th century, 16th century and 17th century. From the highest point at one of old town Dubrovnik’s fortresses, you’ll see an amazing view of the bright blue Adriatic Sea and the spectacular old architecture of the town. Old town Dubrovnik also boasts some of the beautiful filming locations of Game of Thrones. Another amazing secret Croatia holds when it comes to stunning architecture is its 15th century accommodation in old town Dubrovnik, the incredible Prijeko Palace hotel which offers lucky travelers charming rooms in an iconic house built in 1470. Prijeko Palace is also in partnership with several art galleries, and they have brilliantly dedicated each of their hotel rooms to well-known artists. Staying at Prijeko Palace is a truly unique experience and is one of the many reasons why you won’t forget your trip to Croatia.
8 Secret Caves
Croatia is home to hidden gems such as the stunning green cave and blue cave off the coast of Hvar. Getting to Hvar from Dubrovnik is easy, it's just a couple hours on a ferry and you're there. Renting a boat once you arrive in Hvar is a must, because you can’t miss out on seeing both these caves. The green cave allows you to swim in pristine green waters, with cliff jumping off the top of the cave as an option for the daredevils of your group. The blue cave encloses the most epic electric-blue water, and although swimming is not allowed in this one, you’ll still snap one of the best Instagram photos you’ve ever taken (although it may be hard to convince others that that vivid blue is sans filter – it’s okay, you were there and you witnessed it).
7 Hidden Beaches
Although the stunning secret caves are enough of a reason to rent a boat to explore in Hvar, the caves aren’t the only treasures that await your discovery in Croatia. Gorgeous, secluded hidden beaches such as Stiniva Bay, are also accessible via boat and quite close to the caves. A perfect day trip (one you’ll never forget) would include the caves and Stiniva Bay. But why is Stiniva Bay so incredible? It’s an amazing secret Croatia holds; a beautiful hidden beach secluded in a cove, surrounded by stunning high rock face, with the clearest green water you’ll ever swim in. The beach is made up of smooth white rocks (some of which are even heart-shaped!)
6 Incredible Resorts
The resorts in Croatia will blow your mind. For example, Hotel Amfora in Hvar has one of the most beautiful pools in Croatia. Not very many hotels in Croatia have a pool, let alone a luxury pool like Amfora’s. Hotel Amfora’s pool has a cascading waterfall, private cabanas, a cool swim-up bar and an infinity pool design. On Hotel Amfora’s property is the gorgeous Amfora beach, which also happens to be the most popular beach in Hvar. Lastly, their air-conditioned rooms are beyond stunning, with modern design and beautiful views.
5 Exquisite Croatian Wine
Croatia has the perfect vine-growing climate, and you guessed it: the wine in Croatia is amazing. So amazing, in fact, that it might ruin wine for you forever – because it will be tough when the wine back home doesn't compare in taste and quality. The best part is, for the equivalent of $4, you’ll swear you’re drinking a $20 glass of wine. Croatia boasts an awesome variety of indigenous and regional grapes, and the quality of what you’re drinking will speak for itself. Check out Hotel Boskinak on the Island of Pag for an amazing wine tour to see what it’s all about. When it comes to amazing secrets that Croatia holds, the wine is certainly one of the big ones.
4 Delicious Mediterranean Cuisine – With a Twist
It’s no secret that Mediterranean cuisine is often delicious, but Croatia offers Mediterranean cuisine with a twist. For example, Croatia’s got the best cheese that you’ve likely never heard of: Pag cheese. The island of Pag produces incredible cheese. The island’s intense winds spread the delicious salt of the Adriatic Sea everywhere – even onto the vegetation that the sheep graze on. The island’s history of salt production, and the sheep that are raised on the island, provide Croatia with the ability to produce some of the best cheese you’ll ever eat. Croatia’s climate is also perfect for the cultivation of olives, and the olive oil is mouth-watering. Some of the olive trees in Croatia are over 1,600 years old! Most of the restaurants you dine at in Croatia will offer you fresh bread with Croatian olive oil as a complimentary starter, and believe me – it’s so good you’ll wish you could skip the main course and feast on it all evening.
3 Unique Nightlife
From the incredible music festivals on the Island of Pag, to the secret after-party you have to take a taxi boat to get to in Hvar, Croatia has it going on when it comes to nightlife. Not only can you walk down the charming city streets freely drinking your Somersby Apple Cider, but Croatia also offers nightlife suitable for every type of traveler. There’s trendy gems such as the Central Park Club which offers a more chill vibe and awesome live music. There’s the secret after-party outdoor nightclub Carpe Diem in Hvar, which you can only get to by taxi boat. Palmizana Island off the coast of Hvar is always fun and busy, and offers a daytime drinker’s paradise (it too is only accessible via boat). If you’d rather stay on the main island of Hvar, check out Hula Hula Beach Club, a waterfront Hawaiian themed club right by Hotel Amfora, with VIP tables, lounge chairs, exotic cocktails and enthusiastic DJs.
2 Private Villas
Croatia’s stunning Mediterranean architecture includes gorgeous private villas available to rent. If you’re visiting Croatia with a large group of people, consider staying at a private villa. Typically, you can find one that has 6 – 8 bedrooms, a private outdoor pool and both indoor and outdoor dining areas. If you’re visiting Croatia for one of the major music festivals, Croatia Wave can help you find a gorgeous private villa near the festival.
1 The Perfect Tropical Climate For a Sailing Trip
Croatia is one of the sunniest destinations in the world, with over 2,600 hours of sunlight per year. The clear, turquoise blue waters of the Adriatic Sea will not disappoint, and due to the high salt content, you can effortlessly float and relax in Croatia’s beautiful waters once you jump off your sail boat. Croatia offers group rates for yacht trips or sailing trips, which is one of the best ways to see many of the islands of Croatia (Hvar, Dubrovnik, Pag and all of their surrounding islands and hidden gems such as Palmizana, Stiniva Bay and the caves). Croatia has not yet started using the Euro (the currency is still the Croatian Kuna, and is rumored to stay this way until 2017) so the prices have not yet caught up to the pricier European travel destinations such as Paris or Rome. This means that your group can book a sailing trip or one-day boat excursion for a surprisingly great rate. Hurry - the secret is out!